Experiments to determine the effects of turbomachinery fan blade damping concepts such as passively shunted piezoelectric materials on blade response are ongoing at the NASA Glenn Research Center. A vertical rotor is suspended and excited with active magnetic bearings (AMBs) usually in a vacuum chamber to eliminate aerodynamic forces. Electromagnetic rotor excitation is superimposed onto rotor PD-controlled support and can be fixed to either a stationary or rotating frame of reference. The rotor speed is controlled with an air turbine system. Blade vibrations are measured using optical probes as part of a Non-Contacting Stress Measurement System (NSMS). Damping is calculated from these measurements. It can be difficult to get accurate damping measurements using this experimental setup and some of the details of how to obtain quality results are seemingly nontrivial. The intent of this paper is to present those details.

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